Timber Frame Gazebo, Design, Plans & Build – Part 2

Build your own Timber Frame Gazebo for the Patio, Garden, or Backyard . Plans available for download in PDF Format.

Part 2 of 3

See the How to Video.

In Part 1 of this Garden Pavilion Build we got the posts up and the side girts installed.

Build a Timber Frame Style Wood Backyard Pavilion Part 2 of 3
Watch this video on YouTube.
Side girts of 2x8 red cedar extend past front posts
Posts and Side Girts

Part 2 – Build the Timber Frame Gazebo

Cut Upper Beams

The next step is to cut the upper beams to length and mark their crown.

Cut main roof beams to length
Cut main roof beams to length

The ends have a quarter ellipse cut into them.

Trace profile on ends of beams from a plywood pattern
Trace profile on ends of beams from a plywood pattern

I laid out and cut a pattern from plywood according to the drawings. These curves are then traced on the ends of the beams.

Sketchup Image - The top beams have a shallow groove where they sit on the post tops
The top beams have a shallow groove where they sit on the post tops
This shallow groove is made using saw and chisel - Timber Frame Gazebo
This shallow groove is made using saw and chisel

I’ll lay out and cut the shallow groove where it sits on the top of the post. I like the beams to sit down on the post an inch. I like this look and you may have seen me do this on other projects. I think it’s worth the extra time and effort.
As with all the grooves or laps on this timber frame gazebo build, I make a series of close parallel cuts using a large speed square with the circular saw set to depth. Then break these off with a hammer or wooden mallet. Then clean up the groove with a chisel.

DIY Gazebo Build - Curved profile on ends are cut with jigsaw and a long blade
Curved profile on ends are cut with jigsaw and a long blade

Now to cut these quarter ellipse end profiles. For this I use a jigsaw with a long blade. I did a full review of this jigsaw. See the video.
I cut these from the end inward. With a handsaw I make a shallow straight, square cut in the end of the beam first. This helps to start the blade squarely and improves the accuracy of the cut.
During this hot and dry summer there were forest fires burning throughout the west. The smoke in the air on a few of these days made it look like sunset all day long. I decided to leave the footage as the camera saw it and to not colour correct it.
So it was kinda fitting that I burnt the wood on these cuts by turning a bit too sharply at the end of the curve. I sanded the char marks off afterward.

Holes for the lag bolts are pre-drilled before assembly
Holes for the lag bolts are pre-drilled before assembly

I’ll attach the beams to the tops of the posts with a long lag bolt. I countersink the head and washer with a forstner bit, then drill a pilot hole, then finish with a bit slightly smaller than the diameter of the lag bolt shank.

Beams are chamfered with power plane. The bow in these beams can be seen.
Beams are chamfered with power plane. The bow in these beams can be seen.

The beams are then chamfered too. You can see the bow in these beams that I oriented up as the crown.

Angle grinder with sanding disc is very good for quickly chamfering in tight spots - Timber Frame Gazebo
Angle grinder with sanding disc is very good for quickly chamfering in tight spots

I use a grinder with sanding disk to chamfer the curves and tighter corners.

Put Timber Frame Gazebo Beams in Place

Rear beam laid in place with some assistance from neighbour
Rear beam laid in place with some help
Front one too - Timber Frame Gazebo
Front one too

I enlisted the help of my neighbor Calvin to set these beams on the top of the posts. And this went well and they fit the first time.

Long lag bolts hold beam to post
Long lag bolts secure beams to posts

I drill into the post with a long bit and run in the lag bolt with a socket wrench.

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